In a long-past incident, in response to a request that he should try to be less physical with me in public because people were looking at us, he asked scathingly what are we supposed to do?Hold hands?
Like that was a really outrageous, unacceptable suggestion.
My husband will NOT be seen holding my hand. Never. Oh he doesn't mind sitting with an arm around my shoulders or walking with his arm around my waist etc...He would hug me or kiss me in public. Or play with my hair. Sometimes when I am playing hostess & I hand him a plate or something, he'll grab my hand & kiss it - even with people around.
But he will not hold my hand.
But why? I have often demanded. He doesn't like holding hands, he always explains. But why not? He just doesn't. He doesn't have anything more enlightening to offer than that.
So imagine my surprise when on New Year's Day, the two of us are sitting in the lobby of a hotel in Dubai, eating a big breakfast at 6:00am, having been out partying all night & feeling absolutely starved, and the following conversation takes place:
Him: Eh ya 7abibi? Your coffee must be cold.
Me : Freezing. You've been holding my hands for the last hour or so.
Him(hurriedly dropping my hands like they burned him, going red & not looking at me): Sorry. Uh...why didn't you say something?
Me : Say what? I have dreamed of this. Do you think I would blow it for a cup of coffee?
Him: Dreamed of what?
Me : Holding your hands. Now I can die happy.
Him(still not looking at me): Tab bas ba2a. Batali ghalasa.
I have a feeling he will never do it again. But why?
I have a nickname for him. It's a Frenchified version of his name & I think it's really cute. He has always professed to be horrified by it. Whenever I say it, he protests vehemently - after having looked over his shoulder to make sure no one heard.
I have always received saracastic comments like "Inti bitkalimi ibn okhtik?"(are you talking to your nephew?) in response to any attempt to baby him or pamper him. But I love to do that sometimes. When he's sick or tired or when am particularly pleased with him - I get so emotional I can't help pampering him.
And yet inspite of all that, I have persisted in using my favorite nickname for him. I would smile sweetly & call him by his nickname & then cringe, waiting for the inevitable explosion of sarcasm & protest. I enjoy teasing him like that sometimes. I admit it. And I got so much into it that I recently noticed that I hardly ever call him by his real name when we're alone together anymore.
So we're in the middle of this impasse, this morning, I happened to be watching when he first opened his eyes. I smiled sweetly & said good morning K(using his real name). It was a lapse. I was rushing around getting ready for work so didn't have the presence of mind to try to provoke him.
Him: Eh K di?Fi eh?(K?What do you mean K?What's wrong?)
Me : Na3am?(Excuse me?)
Him: Inti bt2ooli K leh?(Why are you calling me K(the real name?))
Me : Ismak ya 7abibi. (Your name, my love.)
Him: Aiwa bas inti min imta ya3ni btindahili bi'ismi?(Yes but since when do you call me by my name?) Inti mitday2a mini wala eh?(Are you mad at me?)
Me : Anadeelak bi'ismak ya3ni mitday2a? (Calling you by your given name means am mad at you?)
Him (sounding very disgruntled): Asl ana ba2ali kteer ma smi3toosh minik.(Well it's been quite a while since I heard it from you.)
I'm confused. Seriously though, what does he want from me now? Does he like the nickname or not?
Is there any explanation other than that he is just weird or mentally unbalanced about some things?